Dutch police have arrested Sam Narain, the co-founder and CEO of Komodore64, a purported game development startup based on the Komodo blockchain. The arrest comes on the back of allegations that Narain bankrupted the company after duping investors into handing over €78 million ($86 million) by falsifying the presence of other big investors, among other offenses.
Komodore64, based in The Hague, was founded in March and claimed to have created a gaming platform where transactions were tracked using the Komodo blockchain. According to regional newspaper Sprout, Narain went to great lengths to secure investment, including hiring a group of individuals to masquerade as a delegation from Goldman Sachs and pretending he had secured investment from them. Komodore64 employees claim the launch party cost tens of thousands of euros, but suppliers never received payment – one, Fokker Terminal, is trying to reclaim their costs through the court system. Employees soon found that they weren’t being paid, and it wasn’t long before Komodore64 co-founder Max Theyse quit. There are even suggestions that Theyse wasn’t the real co-founder, and that the genuine article as pushed aside by Narain soon after launch. The situation got so out of hand that the employees themselves were the ones to file for bankruptcy last month, rather than Narain, with one team member telling Sprout in October that the whole thing was a “shit show”. Judging by some retrospectively unwise tweets, it’s clear to see where at least some of the money went:
Catch @M_eyse if you can! Already airborne though! But hey, no worries. He is going to visit #vietnam to finalize some #blockchain business for #k64, that will be good for #gamedev in #SoutheastAsia. Fly safe! pic.twitter.com/KOg5h9IeqJ
— K64 (@komodoregames) August 27, 2019
From Hilton Hotel to Hague Police Cell
It is rumored that Narain was arrested at the Hilton, The Hague, where he was apparently staying because he feared the wrath of angry investors (given the way other heads of crypto scams have been treated recently, his outlook is not surprising. Such was the concern about the potential of Narain fleeing the country, duped investors even asked in the group’s Discord channel if it was possible to obtain his passport prior to his arrest. Whatever the location of his arrest, Narain will now be spending his day in a police interview room as the authorities try to get to the bottom of the lies that sent Komodore64 to the bottom of the crypto sea like so many other shit-reks.